Sunday, September 7, 2014

Review and Commentary on The Lamentations Of The Flame Princess Rules & Magic Hardback For Your Old School Campaigns

I know I'm very late with this review but Lamentations of The Flame Princess rpg system material is a bit harder to get my hands on in the Northwest corner of Connecticut. Don't ask me why but there we are. On wards with the review, this little book measures about eight and one half inches long by a wee bit less then six inches wide. And clocks in at one hundred and sixty seven pages of Grind House Lamentations Of The Flame Princess rules system. LoFP is a complete reworking of the Holmes basic rules of the Dungeons and Dragons system. The rules are done in the style of a Solomon Kane/Weird Pulp system mixed in  with equal measures of HP Lovecraft along with James Edward Raggi IV wry reworking of the rules systems.   

 This game's artwork and flavor texts  hits you over the head with its proto Dark Renaissance setting. This is a world of incredibly dark horror lurking just beyond the illusions of safety and stability of the mundane world of LoFP into which the forces of darkness and depravity invade frequently.
Note this about the LoFP previous box sets and editions: 
LotFP: Weird Fantasy Role-Playing presents a sinister and horri fic twist on traditional fantasy gaming. Simple enough for a beginner yet meaty enough for the veteran, this game will make all your worst nightmares come true. 

This book is a revision of the Rules & Magic book originally found in the LotFP: Weird Fantasy Role-Playing boxed set. It contains all the rules needed to play the game.
Available Right Over
A Free version of the player's book is available right over
According to the LoFP website :

'Beyond the veil of reality, beyond the infl uence of manipulating politicians, greedy merchants, iron-handed clergy, and the broken masses that toil for their benefi t, echoes of other realms call to those bold enough, and desperate enough, to escape the oppression of mundane life. Treasure and glory await those courageous enough to wrest it from the darkness. But the danger is great, for lurking in the forgotten shadows are forces far stranger and more perilous than even civilization. Th e price of freedom might be paid in souls.'

This book goes a long way to dealing with some of the various OD&D issues that many have faced in the past making this a retroclone to its core. The rules book has very nice quality piece of publishing and has at its back a number of appendixes that bring the  
proto Dark Renaissance setting to life including simple, elegant, and quick gunpowder rules to the fore. 
There are several things that I simply love as a DM about this book:
  • The game rules are simple, quick , and elegant. The various bits of fluff and background is absent so that this beast of a rule book is lean, light, and easy to use. 
  • The encumbrance rules are there and can easily be transported 
  • PC classes have just enough reworking to hit the players over the head with the pulp aesthetic of the setting
  • No matter which way you slice it this is still OD&D and there fore one of the easiest touch stones for players to grasp. This makes LoFP almost an instant pick up with about 89% of players out there. 
  • The artwork throughout the book is indicative of the types of adventures your PC's are going to put on. There is going to be death and destruction frequently and expect death to be lurking around the corner. 
  • The book is now reasonably priced and easily accessible to players. 
  • The reworking of the traditional D&D spells is very flavorful and really fits the pulp sensibly of setting very well. Being a wizard in the LoFP world has tremendous rewards but some heavy burdens that can spill into the campaign world quite easily. 
  • Love, love, love the summoning spell entry. This has lots of implications for all of the Lovecraftian horrors that seem to crawl through the artwork of the LoFP rulebook. That artwork isn't going to be for everyone but it definitely has it place in the world of Lamentations. 
  • Because the book is divided into two parts the first being rules and the second magic, it makes using the book much easier for referencing at the table 
  • Clerics are now the demon hunters, hammers of their gods, agents of law,etc. that they were meant to be. They suit the setting of the LoFP universe and that makes playing them for certain types of players much easier. 
  • Over all the changes to this edition of LoFP have made me pleased and I've been following this set of rules since the beginning. All in all this is a set of rules that I find as a DM easier to use and nicely organized. 
In closing this retroclone lives up to the hype on the side of the tin in my estimation. There are a ton of things that can be done with this system and I think that Raggi and co. did a fine job. Grab a copy of the rule book and because the no art pdf is free, it means that players can easily reference what they need easily at the table as well.
I strongly disagree with some other reviewer who said that they wouldn't bother designing their own adventures based simply on this rules book alone. Because of the evocative artwork found throughout this book I kept thinking of ways to use the scenes depicted for future adventure design and writing. 
 All in all I found this rules book well worth my time and effort.

 I find myself looking through the rows of adventures for this system and dreaming but one has recently caught my attention.
he book that I love to get a copy of for review and to use with the LoFP system is the 
The Seclusion of Orphone of the Three Visions Hardcover.
But this title will have to wait for another time.
If your curious about this one its available right over HERE


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